Sensory Analysis Using Sensory Analysis in Food Technology

Sensory Analysis

Using sensory analysis in Food Technology

Sensory analysis is used to evaluate food products

Sensory analysis is used in industry and discovers details on:

Flavour and taste


Appearance – Colour, shape, size



Sensory Analysis studies three main areas

What does the product taste like?

What are its sensory characteristics?

How does a change in production, packaging or storage affect sensory characteristics

Sensory analysis in the Food Industry

Sensory analysis is used at several stages during product development

Companies can compare a competitor’s product

Improve products by modifying or changing the ingredients

Check that the specification is being met

Industry continued

Monitor quality control by checking regular samples against specification

Detect differences between products from different runs or batches

Profile the characteristics of new products

Describe specific characteristics

Industry Continued

Demonstrate new products to marketing team

Promote new or reformulated products to consumers

Sensory analysis is carried out in controlled conditions

Which senses are used in Analysis?

Sight – Appearance

Smell and taste – Aroma and flavour

Touch – Texture and mouthfeel

Sound – Noise

Taste areas of the tongue

Sensory Analysis Tests

Preference Tests – These supply information about people’s likes/dislikes of a product.

Discrimination Tests – Aim to evaluate specific attributes ie Crunchiness

Preference Tests

Pair comparison/preference test – a test which compares a pair of similar products looking at specific characteristics

Hedonic tests –  Test sample and grade 1=Dislike very much, 5=Like very much. Samples analysed for lowest/highest score

Scoring tests – Samples are scored on a scale between like and dislike

Discrimination Tests

Ranking – Decide on attribute to be ranked eg Crunchiness, allow people to evaluate samples and place them in rank order

Star Diagram – Allows food products to be evaluated using a range of attributes

Star Diagram

The test can be used to:

Evaluate differences in similar products

Gauge consumer response

Analyse specific attributes

Check a product meets its specification

Compare similarities in a range of products

Show opportunities for product development

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